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Driving Under the Influence in Washington

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 30 people in the United States are killed daily in a vehicular accident where a driver is under the influence. This means about one-third of all traffic fatalities in the United States are the result of drunk driving.

Driving under the influence is a dangerous activity that not only has serious legal consequences, but can result in a fatal or severally damaging collision. Washington State DUI laws are similar to most other states’, with a limit of .08% for those 21, .02% for those under 21, and .04% for commercial drivers. Knowing some of the legal implications of driving under the influence can be helpful in reminding exactly what is in store if we get behind the wheel drunk.

What Happens if You’re Charged with a DUI in WA State?

The Evergreen State views two different types of license suspensions for those convicted of a DUI depending on if you are arrested or convicted.

If arrested, your license will become suspended if you don’t request a hearing within 2o days of the arrest date. The hearing is designed to allow you an opportunity to dispute your charges in the court. Your license will also not be suspended if  the hearing examiner decides against it, but their decision can be overridden if the court decides against it. If you don’t request a hearing, your license can be suspended anywhere from 90 days to two years.

The length of the suspension depends on prior offenses and the severity of the incident, and will be effective 60 days following the day of the arrest was made.

If you find yourself convicted by the court, you may be required to install an ignition interlock device and issued an ignition interlock device license (IIL) for a designated period of time. Under these conditions, you are only allowed to drive a vehicle equipped with this device for the length of the suspension. The law will waive all rights to request a hearing to contest if you install a interlock device.

What if I’m not licensed in Washington State?

Penalty is still enforced if you are not licensed in the state. The incident will be documented on your Washington State driving record which may result in your license being either suspended or revoked in the state. Action may be taken in the state your licensed in, since a copy of the DUI record will be sent to the proper agency.

Have you been convicted of a DUI? Give Jensen Legal a call at 206-617-9173 or contact us online to seek legal help today.

Sources: WA State DOL and CDC.

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